22 violations for La Isla Restaurant in Allentown; Flies present throughout the facility, Mice dropping in cold storage room, bag of garbage was stored in a cardboard box on top of produce

22 violations for La Isla Restaurant in Allentown; Flies present throughout the facility, Mice dropping in cold storage room, bag of garbage was stored in a cardboard box on top of produce

Allentown, PA

La Isla Restaurant 2

46 N 10TH ST
Allentown, PA 18102

The City of Allentown conducted an unannounced retail food inspection on 7/13/2020. As a result of that inspection, and due to the severity of the specific violations the La Isla Restaurant 2 was cited as being, “Out of Compliance” with Pennsylvania’s food safety regulations. During this inspection a total of 22 violations were found.

The inspector made the following comments in support of the violations found during the inspection:

  • A box of sweet plantains stored in the dry storage room were moldy, spoiled, and dripping onto the floor. Discard and monitor stock for freshness. Plantains were discarded.
  • Uncooked rice is being stored in a garbage can. Do not store foods in unapproved containers. Obtain an approved food storage container.
  • Facility does not have sufficient space allotted for storage of soiled and cleaned dishes. Do not store dirty dishes on the clean side of the three-bay sink. Keep dirty dishes on the wash side of the sink and clean dishes on the sanitizing side of the sink. Do not allow dirty dishes to pile up and overflow to the clean side of the dish room.
  • Coving is missing and/or damaged in the kitchen near the screen door and along the wall to the left and right of the door. Repair or replace coving.
  • Side door of the dry storage room was propped open. Do not prop open doors. Door was closed. (allows acccess to vermin)
  • Exit door in the kitchen near the dish room has rips in the screen. Repair screen and fix gaping below door to prevent pest entry.
  • Side door of the dry storage room has a 1 inch gap leading to the outside. Seal this gap to prevent pest entry.
  • Flour and bread crumbs used for breading and frying were stored open with no covering on top of the left Bain Marie in the kitchen. Cover all foods in storage.
  • Facility is using plastic cups to scoop rice in the cold storage room and sauce in the Bain Marie in the kitchen. Use an approved utensil with a handle, such as a scoop or ladle and store with the handle above the top of the food and the container. Cups were removed and discarded.
  • Cut peppers were stored in direct contact with a cardboard box which is not an approved food contact surface. Peppers were discarded. Do not store cut peppers at room temperature or in contact with non-food contact surfaces.
  • Produce was stored underneath a bag of garbage in a cardboard box. The bag of trash and box were removed. Do not store trash with food items.
  • Cut cabbage was placed and double stacked in the Bain Marie at 70 degrees F. Foods were out of temperature for less than 4 hours. Foods were moved to a working refrigerator.
  • Flour and bread crumbs used for breading and frying were stored at room temperature. After use, sift flours and bread crumbs for lumps and refrigerate or discard. If refrigerating, cover and date mark. Products were discarded as they were out of temperature beyond 4 hours.
  • All foods in the cold hold unit in the front of the facility were held above 41°F with the middle and section of the pan closest to the employees being significantly warmer than the end of the pan closest to the customer. Food in cold holding must be kept at 41 degrees F or below. Foods must be discarded after 4 hours or 6 hours if kept under 70 degrees F. Facility will discard these items after 6 hours.
  • Opened salad dressings, cut peppers, heads of lettuce, and cut hearts of celery were stored at room temperature. These products require refrigeration and were discarded during this inspection. Store all products requiring refrigeration at a temperature of 41 degrees F or below.
  • Salsas in the right Bain Marie were held at 50 degrees F and above. Food in cold holding must be kept at 41 degrees F or below. Salsas containers were double stacked. Do not double stack containers in a Bain Marie. Facility adjusted containers.
  • Cold hold unit in the front of the facility and the two Bain Maries in the kitchen are not capable of maintaining food temperatures of 41 degrees or less as required. The left Bain Marie is not in use and the right Bain Marie had an ambient temperature of 49 degrees F. Have these units serviced, repaired, or replaced. If using units prior to repairs, foods may be stored for up to 4 hours or 6 hours if kept under 70 degrees F. Written documentation of this process and a temperature log are required if keeping for 6 hours.
  • Hotel pans are being put away wet and not allowed time for draining and/or air-drying. Air dry dishes before storing.
  • The Person in Charge does not have adequate knowledge of food safety as evidenced by this non-compliant inspection.
  • Chicharrones, fried fish, and pork shoulder were held at 90 °F, 91 °F, and 120 °F respectively in the hold hot unit in the front of the store, rather than 135°F or above as required. Foods may be cut into smaller portions and/or stacked lower to try to maintain heat. Monitor food temperatures to ensure foods are holding a temperature of 135°F or higher. Foods that are out of temperature must be discarded after 4 hours. Foods may also be reheated to 165 °F and returned to hot holding. Facility chose to discard out of temperature foods after 4 hours.
  • Other foods, such as rice and large cuts of meat, had sections that were under 135 °F. These sections were piled above the rim of the pan. Do not stack food above the rim of the pan for hot holding and stir foods to support even heat distribution. Foods that are out of temperature must be discarded after 4 hours. Foods may also be reheated to 165 °F and returned to hot holding. Facility chose to discard out of temperature foods after 4 hours.
  • There is a gap between the door and frame of the sliding door cooler. Repair door to eliminate gap.
  • The slicer had a build up of food residue in the housing for the blade. Disassemble slicer, wash, rinse, sanitize, and air dry components.
  • Thermometer was not clean and had a sticky residue. Clean food temperature measuring devices before use or storage.
  • A bag of garbage was stored in a cardboard box on top of produce in the dry storage room. Trash bag and box were removed. Do not store garbage with food products.
  • The floor underneath the produce storage in the dry storage room is dirty with debris and a sticky residue. The floors in the kitchen underneath the preparation tables have a build up of food residue. Clean these floors.
  • Flies present throughout the facility in the dining area, dry storage, kitchen, and cold storage room. Mice dropping present in cold storage room near the rice and behind the freezers. Continue working with pest control company and increase pest control measures in these areas.
  • Observed large buckets of food cooling at room temperature in the kitchen on a side prep table, which is not a proper cooling method. Proper cooling methods include using ice as an ingredient, using an ice bath, using an ice wand, or in containers less than 4 inches deep to cool in the refrigerator. All foods must cool from 135 degrees F to 70 degrees F in 2 hours and then from 70 degrees F to 41 degrees F in 4 hours.
  • Food facility does not have available sanitizer test strips or test kit to determine appropriate sanitizer concentration at the time of the inspection. Obtain test strips.
  • Mops are not being hung to air dry. Hang mops to air dry.